Werken bij UMC Utrecht
Vacancy number: 2019/0036
Apply to: March 15 2019
(gewijzigde einddatum)
Education: University
Employment: Temporary position
Full-time/Part-time percentage: 100%

As PhD fellow you will participate in the EU-funded Innovative Training Network BonePainII (www.bonepain.eu). BonePainII is a European Innovative Training Network to promote frontline research, innovation and education within bone pain. Millions in Europe and beyond suffer from bone pain, which is a debilitating complication of many musculoskeletal disorders such as arthritis and bone metastasis. Your key tasks as a PhD fellow are to manage and carry through your research project, participate in the BonePainII training and network activities, take PhD courses, write scientific articles and your PhD thesis, participate in national and international congresses and scientific meetings, research stay at an external research laboratory within the BonePainII network and disseminate your research. We have two positions available. PhD project 1: Mitochondrial regulation of bone pain. You main goal will be to better understand the regulation of bone pain induced by cancer and/or osteoarthritis. You will focus on exploring the changes and functional role of mitochondrial specific functions in sensory neurons and osteoclasts that are linked to bone pain. PhD project 2: Targeting complement to stop osteoarthritis induced bone pain. Your main goal is to identify which mechanisms cause osteoarthritis-induced bone pain. You will investigate how neuro-immune interactions lead to persisting OA pain, with a particular focus on how complement components affect neuronal functioning, and bone and cartilage biology in the context of OA. In both project you will be using animals models and perform behavioral tests combined with molecular and biochemical assays. Expected start date is June 2019.


You will work in the neuro-immunology pain group of Niels Eijkelkamp, which is part of the Laboratory of Translational Immunology at the University Medical Center (UMC) Utrecht, the Netherlands. You will be part of a team of PhD students, post-docs and research technicians that are actively collaborating on projects to better understand chronic pain and develop novel therapeutic strategies to kill pain. More info: https://www.umcutrecht.nl/en/Research/Research-programs/Infection-Immunity/Research-Groups/Group-Eijkelkamp. The BonePainII network has participants from six European countries and encompasses eight academic groups and four industries all committed to creating an outstanding training program for fifteen early stage researchers (ESRs) to elucidate the mechanisms of bone pain and develop new medicines. The project is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 814244.


We are looking for a highly-motivated, excellent candidate with a MSc degree in biomedical sciences with a an interest in immunology and neuroscience and pre-clinical studies comprising of in vivo animal research including behavioral paradigms as well as molecular and biochemical techniques. You are challenged by novel scientific concepts, flexible, and like to work in a interdisciplinary team. Preferentially you have experience in animal research and/or a master in immunology/neuroscience. Experience with bone cancer or osteoarthritis pain research will be an advantage. Fluency in English is a requirement. There are strict mobility and eligibility criteria. You must not have resided or carried out your main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the Netherlands for more than twelve months in the last three years immediately prior to your recruitment – unless as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention. You must be an Early-Stage Researcher (ESR): at the date of recruitment you must be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of your research career and must not have not been awarded a doctoral degree. Key criteria for the assessment of applicants: relevant skills and knowledge; previous publications; relevant work experience; the grades achieved during bachelor/master studies; other professional activities; language skills; assessment of the candidate’s motivation letter.

The maximum salary for this position (100%) is € 3.020,00 gross per month based on full-time employment (work week 36 hours). This job is based on a temporary position for 3-4 years.

In addition, we offer an annual benefit of 8.3%, holiday allowance, travel expenses and career opportunities. The terms of employment are in accordance with the Cao University Medical Centers (UMC).


The terms of employment and salary are in accordance with the Cao University Medical Centers (UMC) and in accordance to the rules and regulations laid down by the European Union’s Horizon2020 Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action European Training Network (http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/wp/2018-2020/main/h2020-wp1820-msca_en.pdf, p. 80). Exact salary will be confirmed upon appointment. Write in your cover letter the interest in and qualifications for the project (max. one page). In addition we will need your full CV, list of publications, master´s degree diploma (including grade transcripts for bachelor´s and master´s degrees and enclose a short description of the grading scale used) and two letters of recommendation including contact details for references. For those applicants whose principal language of instruction during their BSc/MSc was not English it will be an advantage if they enclose IELTS or TOEFL test scores or equivalent proof of English skills. Applications will be evaluated by an assessment committee consisting of the principal supervisor and 1-2 other members of the BonePain network or the Department. Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview (e.g. via Skype).

More information

If you have any questions about this vacancy, please contact Mr.Niels Eijkelkamp, Associate Professor via phone +31 (0)88 75 543 59 or email n.eijkelkamp@umcutrecht.nl.

Acquisition based on this jobopening is not appreciated.

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